Sunday, May 4, 2014

दैट ऑड्रे हैपबर्न वाज़ सीरियसली कूल

अपने जीते जी एक मिथक में तब्दील हो चुकीं अभिनेत्री ऑड्रे हैपबर्न (४ मई १९२९ – २० जनवरी १९९३)की जन्मतिथि पर आज गूगल सर्च ने एक नया डूडल पेश किया है. नए ज़माने के लोगों को इस अभिनेत्री की लोकप्रियता का संभवतः अंदाज़ा भी नहीं हो सकता. एक समय था जब समूचा यूरोप और अमेरिका उसके एक-एक पल की खबर जानने को बेचैन रहता था. दुनिया भर की स्त्रियाँ उसकी हेयरस्टाइल और फैशन पर पैनी निगाह धरे रहती थीं.
कुछ साल पहले हार्पर कॉलिन्स ने उनके बेटे लूका डोटी और फिल्म निर्माता-लेखक लूदोविचा दामीयानी की लिखी किताब ‘ऑड्रे इन रोम’ का प्रकाशन किया था.
उस पर छपी एक स्वतःस्फूर्त समीक्षा मैंने लम्बे समय से अपने कबाड़खाने में सहेज रखी थी. फिलहाल उसे ही मूल अंग्रेज़ी में लगा रहा हूँ. समय मिला तो इसका अनुवाद किया जाएगा, वरना इसी से काम चलाइये.
ऑड्रे का पहला पोर्ट्रेट जो यूसुफ़ कार्श का खींचा हुआ है, कभी कबाड़खाने में लगाया जा चुका है.   

Oooooooooh, no not again, Audrey Hepburn!!!
That’s kind of how it feels, right?

When so many admire the same person, it becomes too common, too easy, and in the end whenever you hear her name you raise an exhausted eyebrow.
That didn't stop me from buying the book Audrey in Rome the other day with the idea of looking at it on the beach in Montauk. Scott raised an exhausted eyebrow, obviously.

Of course, it rained (isn't that how all stories are ending this spring?) and we found ourselves stuck in traffic (isn't that how all weekends start in the Hamptons?) and I started flipping through the pages in the car.

Ten minutes later opening the book, I finally said to Scott…
“Wow, that Audrey Hepburn was seriously cool.”
He started cranking his neck to try to get a look at the book while driving – so we ended up pulling over to get a coffee. We then proceeded to devour the book in its entirety and came to some conclusions about her style.
Here are a few…


She’s practically perfect in every photo; her everyday style is of an amazing simplicity. She rarely wore jewellery, never anything ostentatious, nor too complicated, or too uncomfortable, and never anything overly affected.


She had a real weakness for headscarves – at the time, it was done much more than it is today – and she was an avid collector.


One of her signatures, even before Jane Birkin coined it, was wicker baskets. She wore them all through her life and would get them from the various markets she’d visit. Givenchy made some for her or she’d have one that the children would make for her when she was on one of her UNICEF missions.

I’ve always thought it the ultimate sign of chicness to mix modest quotidian objects with more sophisticated items.


She was pretty tall and apparently, always thought her feet were too big (she was a 40)(Might be the only thing we have in common, she and I) which didn't stop her from wearing flats, especially ballet flats but also a lot of moccasins, and her heels were never too high. She was a dancer and loved to be able to move.


Her moccasins, a true signature for her (you remember Funny Face?) were Gucci and Ferragamo.


She used to say that her eyes were not as big as you’d imagine. She owed her look to a makeup artist, Alberto De Rossi every time, who created her “mascara look” as well as her “wings” eyebrows. She starting wearing that look very early and never really stopped.


Her big sunglasses were a way of keeping the impression of over-sized eyes.

Black and a bun.

It was her favourite thing to wear. It seems banal to us now but at the time, of voluptuous movie stars, it was a true revolution.

A light coat, ballet flats, gloves, and a little handbag.

It was her go-to look for daily errands.

Yeah, she ran errands – that’s why she loved Rome: people left her alone.


Her dog was often a part of her look. His name was Mr. Famous.


During the 70's, she started to put together a look that was a little more gypsy, with flowing dresses, capes, and open neck shirts… She made a place in her wardrobe for Saint Laurent and Valentino.


It’s at that time as well that she got a haircut that could be described as rather disastrous… Which makes her more human so even more irresistible in my eyes :)

Voilà, I promise to stop rolling my eyes every time someone says the name her name – even more so that she was more than just a fashion icon. She was an incredible woman, played in iconic movies and was very much loved and so passionate about her mission with UNICEF.
One of the reasons the myth persist because she gives such a real feel to being stylish.
Scott was noting that today, we are used to see celebrities being dressed “off” and “on”. In sweatpants during the day walking their dogs in LA, and over the top, dressed by stylists for red carpet events. It creates such a disconnect in their style that it’s difficult to keep up the dream.
Audrey Hepburn was pretty much herself everywhere and it shows.
To close, just because Audrey Hepburn wasn't only that awesome bouncy young girl her entire life, but also a particularly sublime older woman, I think we should finish with this.

And there you go.
Merde! I’m a big fan!
What about you? What do you think about the Audrey mythology? Do you roll your eyes or just love her?
- By Garance


Prasanna Choudhary/प्रसन्न कुमार चौधरी said...

Thanks for the post. Here is a brief note on Audrey Hepburn (published in LIFE, Special Issue, Life's Legends, 20 Who Shook The World, November 7, 2011):
When Audrey Hepburn was cast as Eliza Doolittle in 1964's My Fair Lady, not a few film-goers were curious whether she could pull off the role. That she could play an aristocrat, of course, there was no doubt; after all, she was fluent in numerous languages (Dutch, English, French, Italian); had won an Oscar for playing a princess in her first starring role in 1953's Roman Holiday; and cemented her status as a fashion icon when she immortalized a little black Givenchy dress in 1961's Breakfast at Tiffany's. But could such a seemingly ethereal creature possibly play Eliza, the archetypal guttersnipe? As it turned out, the ragamuffin role was no stretch for Hepburn: She had spent a childhood of near-starvation and ruined health in Nazi-occupied Holland during World War II; the big screen flower girl, during the war years, been so poor that she had learned to make flour from tulips. She eventually traded acting for philanthropy, working tirelessly for UNICEF to end childhood hunger and disease, comforting children with the same regal grace that had marked her singular, celebrated film career.

मुनीश ( munish ) said...

ऑड्रे जी की कई पिक्चरें देखीं जिनमें सबसे यादगार रोमन हॉलिडे लगती है ।